After seeing Bullitt, we went home and watched an episode of Weeds, then of Law & Order, Criminal Intent. Went to bed at about midnight.
I loved Bullitt. I had not seen it when it came out in 1968. I was a fan of Steve McQueen's - who wasn't? - but I probably put that film in a category of types I didn't need to see. What I am wondering now is what it is that I loved about it, why it made me happy, really.
Well, there was the car chase. Considered the best on film. It has to be. It is extraordinary. I felt lilke I was watching a masterpiece of choreography and photography. I loved the way it started slowly, then gradually built up into madness, all over San Francisco.
And there was McQueen. I don't know why, but I had the impression that McQueen was short, rather slight in stature. He isn't. Wasn't. He didn't exactly establish a character in this film - nobody did - but he was good to watch.
When the producers were trying to convince Robert Vaughan to play the heavy, Vaughan had to be convinced. "No plot," he said. And in a way that's true. There is a plot, enough to hand a movie on, particularly a car chase movie. Clearer than some plots are now. There just wasn't much of a real story that explained some of the behavior. Oh, they did convince him, with more money.
So let's review. No real plot, no character development, but one hell of a car chase.
The lack of any real development may actually be what pleased me. The simplicity of it, the ease of understanding the uncomplicated characters. Normally this makes me mad, but not here, I think because of when it was made. The film, now, is a glimpse back in time. It gives us a good view of a hospital - SO primitive - and of the City at that time. It's a time capsule.
whatever the reason, I loved it. It made me smile.